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Grateful Dead Live at Capitol Theater on 1970-03-21

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Grateful Dead Live at Capitol Theater on 1970-03-21

Topics Live concert

Walkin' The Dog, Me & My Uncle, Death Don't Have No Mercy, Good Lovin'-> Drums-> Good Lovin', Dire Wolf, Big Boss Man, He Was A Friend Of Mine-> Viola Lee Blues-> The Seven-> Cumberland Blues

Collection GratefulDead
Band/Artist Grateful Dead
Venue Capitol Theater
Location Port Chester, NY

Source Audience - Early Show Only
Lineage Sony dynamic mics (balcony, 20' spread) > Sony 124 Cassette Deck > Norelco 120 normal bias tape > Susie Q > Tascam 122mk3 > Lucid ADA1000 A/D Converter > Tascam CDRW700 > EAC > Soundforge > CD Wave > mkwACT > SHN
Taped by Ken & Judy Lee
Transferred by John Jay Hance, Peter G, Evan Bellaff


Ken and Judy Lee didn't think anyone would be interested in hearing their recordings...

Between the years 1970 and 1971, Ken worked security at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, New York, while his girlfriend Judy ran movie projections between sets. One of a few live music taping enthusiasts of the time, Ken was granted exclusive permission by club promoter Howard Stein to record the shows at the theatre for his own personal use. Judy was on hand to perform the tape flips while Ken was busy doing his job.

In 1968, the couple took Judy's brother Mark, who was nine years old to his first concert at "Cafe Wha?" in New York City. The Monkees were on tour and Jimi Hendrix was along for the ride as their opening act.

Several years later, Mark was introduced to the music of the Grateful Dead at the Nassau Coliseum on March 19th, 1973 in Uniondale, Long Island. This single event marked the beginning of a life long odyssey of musical experiences with the band that affected him most deeply. Along with his good friend, John Jay Hance, who Mark met at a Dead show in 1979, the two traveled around the United States with the band in search of the ultimate musical experience, attending over 350 shows together. The two also shared a common interest in seeing live music of a wide variety of genres, and during the 23 years that they knew each other attended more than 1000 total concerts together, until Mark's untimely death in November of 2002.

Mark knew of brother in-law Ken's recordings from the Capitol Theatre, and had a strong interest in having the shows circulated; however, being true to his word to Howard Stein, Ken kept the recordings under wraps and the tapes never saw the light of the trading domain (One noteworthy bending of this rule occurred when Ken agreed at Mark's request to circulate the late show that the Grateful Dead did on June 24th of 1970. This show is highly regarded as an all-time magical performance by the Dead during their 30 year history as a band)


Reviewer: Thumbblue - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 18, 2016
Subject: Love it
The viola lee does indeed rip...Cumberland is great. Man, 1970 is good. God bless the folks who went to the trouble to make all these recordings possible. Grew up with the dead and it still blows me away. My girlfriend makes fun of me when I have the earbuds and iPad and in my own world groovin on the boys making this music...we have fun with it....I give her a hard time about new country music and she tells me Jerry can't love that girl.
Reviewer: tanman82 - favoritefavoritefavorite - November 20, 2015
Subject: viola lee
another great viola lee.the GD speed metal portion from 11:20 ish to 12 min. mark is intense but not as good or long as the other portchester viola lee or the fillmore west version from april or obviously the harpur college 5/2/70. the seven jam is cool/ rare etc. another unique setlist from portchester a la the november mystery train-etc. possible/probable last mercy,(notwithstanding the reworked arrangement in '89) friend of mine and ultra rare walkin the dog again notwithstanding a few 80's versions

and i again lament the lack of a good recording of the killer viola lee from the midnight shows at the FE in July
Reviewer: doug_the_dude - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 5, 2014
Subject: --
Boy, these Port Chester auds from 1970 are such treasures - this one's happily put up there with 11/6 and 11/8. Sound quality is *absolutely* fine for what this is - a miracle it has survived and sounds so good. And, yes, that Viola Lee absolutely shreds. You've got to hear this thing to believe it.
Reviewer: njpg - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 12, 2013
Subject: -
Not a very good recording, but parts of the show are excellent, notably Walkin the Dog, Me & My Uncle, and the weird and unusual Viola/Seven/Cumberland. The remainder basically shuns the later part of the year's awesomeness in favor of '69's tentative shoddiness.
Reviewer: mikemet - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 8, 2012
Subject: wow just wow
stumbled upon this one while doing quick research-
17 He was a friend of mines - this being the last. WHY.

I wish I knew. Im rating this a 5 prior to listening of several reasons

historical value- VLB #25 of 31 / He was a friend #17 of 17

Ironically- 3 times these 2 were played in same show- last time done.

Seven- #5 of 5 not jammed out but rare as rare can get

I can go on and on and on. Must have. Must listen.
Reviewer: dedhed1959 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 8, 2012
Subject: air mail.....
i give this a 5 just for VLB. i have an old beat up copy of this that i would play for guests after the psychadelics took affect. on more than 1 occasion, i can recall seeing a friend or 2 "flying" out of the front door of my apartment. the word "intense" does not aqdequately describe this performance of viola lee.
Reviewer: Pangolin22 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - February 22, 2011
Subject: Capitol 70
This whole run is amazing and the backstory on these tapes is great. Thanks for posting this show.

A great performance all around but probably not the best of the run. I love the Dire Wolf and the Viola Lee, as a reviewer below states, "cleans the fuckin floor".
Reviewer: Magichord - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 6, 2010
Subject: Obscured by the Archives site configuration?
The early show is as much of a gem as the late one, IMHO-- but to echo "zzdoggies" from below, "stumbled upon" applies double here. When you do a general search for 1970 and put it in chrono, only the late show appears, and only one version, at least for me. And once you're there, Ken and John didn't post any note of "Late show" on the page (main version) that will prompt folks to look for an early one. Not everyone will know that there's more great music from that night, unless they frequent There are so many younger fans now who've never seen a copy of Deadbase or the DH Taper's Compendium. The only way to find it is to click on "Check For Other Copies", and then notice the difference in the setlists among the four listed. Maybe this is a new Archive trend in order to consolidate show listings...anyway, many cheers and thanks to Ken and Judy once again for another magical, special show unveiled from the early years!
Reviewer: schaeff48 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 10, 2010
Subject: So Thankful
I sought out a copy of the dead doing walkin the dog, after finding out what setlists contained this gem i decided to find the 70 version as i tend to like the older stuff better. Thank you SO much for posting, after reading the background story, it makes it so much better, sounds great, i like the grit of the old tapes!
Reviewer: Episteme - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 30, 2009
Subject: dreamer said it!
Viola fu*king SMOKES!!! I give it a 5 star just because of how good VLB is. Also, the recording isn't that bad. It's pretty nice. Especially considering it's from the early 70s.
Reviewer: zzdoggies - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 29, 2006
Subject: Classic Dead
I stumbled accross this gem while browsing the archives. I lean towards the late 60's and early 70's shows and this doesn't dissappoint.
Reviewer: courtilles - favoritefavoritefavorite - April 30, 2006
Subject: From PARIS
Merci beaucoup KEN et JUDY pour ce temoignage
Moi il m'a fallu attendre 1972 pour les voir
Reviewer: rick e. - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - March 12, 2006
Subject: 3/21/70
Thanks Ken and Judy, this is a real nice sounding audience.Sounds like it was recorded yesterday !
Reviewer: hyperboy - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - December 20, 2005
Subject: Oh yeah!
This show is just a ton of fun. Great setlist and great fun playing. Thanks!
Reviewer: whirlwind dreamer 65-95 - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - September 16, 2005
Subject: this viola cleans the fuckin floor
this one just really mops up!! the real gravy this is pure rockin dead sounds great for 70 aud stream it. play real loud!! and just smile!!!
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Uploaded by
Jonathan Aizen
on 5/31/2004
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